By Tom Henderson • Staff Writer • 

United (and sometimes divided) they stand

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First of all, I applaud all of the students that took a stand for what they believe in and walked out. Many students do not feel safe attending their own schools and feel that nothing or not enough is being done to address it. I am very disappointed with the stance that Tim France, Principal of Willamina High School took. However, we must remember that Willamina remains in the past and has not socially caught up with the rest of the County and this latest movement by the Principal just proves that he embodies and promotes this type of thinking and behavior. I'm sorry that the students that stood up and walked out have to spend Saturday in detention, but at least they are forward thinkers and show some hope for the community in the coming years.


What hasn't been well reported is that the vast majority of students didn't "walk out" or "protest."
The NR said in an earlier article that "a couple of hundred" Mac High students walked out. By my calculation that means that while the protesters were out doing their thing, 90% of Mac High students were still in the school focused and working hard at getting a good education and preparing for their future. The newspaper isn't really interested in mundane things like that.


Miata1991, What if it turned out that the Principal of Willamina High just happens to have a different opinion and sees the world differently than you? What if it turned out that he isn't unenlightened or socially backwards? What if turns out in life that two intelligent people, both of good will (you and him) can look at an issue and come to different conclusions? Wouldn't it make for an interesting world? Imagine what you could learn from someone like that... and what he could likewise learn from you.


Joel2828 - "What if it turned out that the Principal of Willamina High just happens to have a different opinion and sees the world differently than you?"

Tim France chose to punish those that had a different opinion from his...

Seems like the kids learned that the principal had little tolerance for their views and really didn't value their right to voice their opinion. Before we can all experience an "interesting world" both sides must be allowed to express their opinion.....and, both sides must be willing to listen to the opposition.


You make a good point, Mudstump. But I don't think the principal punished them for their opinions. I think he punished them for violating school rules. For all we know, he may agree with their opinion. But he also has the responsibility to insure that the school functions in an orderly way. Had they protested before or after school I'll bet ya he wouldn't have done a thing. He would probably even have been proud of them for exercising their first amendment rights while still being respectful of school rules.


Only an idiot would say that mass shootings are the price we pay for freedom. That's absurd. Stop using that line. Sane people have advocated for years the repeal of so-called "gun-free schools" laws, allowing vetted and trained concealed carriers to defend their students and neighbors. I favor CHL holders in plainclothes over uniformed guards, because criminals might shoot them first. The Washington Times recently published a piece supporting this.


Yes, let’s just add more guns. Since more guns equals more safety, Rotwang, pretty soon you should be so safe you couldn’t break wind on the sidewalk without a dozen Barney Fifes drawing their sidearms and taking you down. Boy, I feel safer already!

With armed hall monitors at every school, our kids will be so much safer. Turn the schools into citadels with polycarbonate glass, concrete barriers, blast doors and armed teachers—I love it! Who needs learning when you can hold lockdown drills? None of these heat-packing teachers will ever accidentally forget and leave a weapon in an unlocked drawer, in a hanging jacket pocket or lying on a bathroom sink for a nutcase to find and take—oh no, people never make mistakes like that. Besides, I’m sure every school district in the country has plenty of money to provide teachers with the law-enforcement-grade tactical training that’d be crucial to this sort of plan having any chance of working, right? Well, no matter. I’m certain, Rotwang, you’ll be the first to step up and write the government a big fat tax check to cover the cost of training the teacher/soldiers and building the prison-grade school facilities needed to keep our children safe from all the mass-shooters. Because, dang it, those guns are worth it!

Or maybe we could just acknowledge we’ve got a crisis that will require something more than absurd solutions like turning educators into SWAT personnel.


SSRI’s…they are bad for some. Why is nobody talking SSRI’s? Are 100% of these young-people incidents SSRI cases? Or just 90%? These have horrible side-effects for many young people who take them or try to get off of them. As Obama said, our medical system is broken.


Trafik, I am certain that you are smarter than you sound in the printed word. I'm not impressed by argumentum ad absurdum and other such verbal drama. The fact is that mass shootings simply don't happen where teachers and staff are allowed to carry. Those who care can read the WT article for themselves:


It seems that in view of the bombings in Texas proves that guns are not the root cause of the problem. People are. Mentally disturbed people. Yet no efforts to ID these individuals. All the mistakes leading up to the FLA. killings are criminal negligence from those sworn to protect.
More guns do equal safety--in the right hands. The number of guns has increased dramatically in the last ten years---yet crime and homicide has decreased. This includes mass shootings.
If you point out the errors that have caused failures in the background check, you are called a "gun nut". instead of some rational thought about the options, only taking rights away from law abiding citizens is considered. All rifle deaths in the US total less than 400 per year. Don't you wish that opioid deaths were that low?

Just asking for a rational look at ALL the contributing factors, not just the "gun nut" fantasy.


Seems like a monumental jump in logic to presume that any single incident proves certainly don't know that the individual (or group?) in the Austin area is/are mentally disturbed as no culprit has been identified......


Tagup, so a person setting traps with explosives is not considered by you to be mentally disturbed. WOW!


Sorry, Rotwang, I prefer my mass shooting crises quelled by professionals. If I have a choice between a tactically-trained law enforcement officer and a P.E. teacher with a quavering Beretta, I’m going to choose law enforcement every time. We pay our teachers to be educators, not soldiers.

Where you’re seeing Lone Rangers ready to ride in and save the day, I’m seeing Barney Fifes — earnest and well-meaning but terrified and totally unqualified for split-second life-and-death decisions.

You can go back to NCIS now.


would have been nice if the Parkland coach had a gun when he shielded the kids with his body. He ran to his certain death to do what he could with what he had.I guess a pro was no where near--in fact the "pro" was hiding.


Would have been nice if the "Guns for Everyone!" mentality didn't enable disgruntled wacko losers to bring AR-15 style semi-automatic rifles and multiple magazines into schools in the first place.


REB.... wow!! by your definition, every special forces team is made up of mentally disturbed people...interesting diagnosis.......
I prefer to hold judgement until more facts are available.


Tagup, it's no use arguing with some people. His mind is set. It's amusing (but not totally surprising) that he identifies as republican.

Sal Peralta

REB - The difference between guns and other weapons is the immediacy of the lethality and the ease with which they can be acquired. That's why 10 percent of suicide attempts but 90 percent of suicide completions use firearms as opposed to some other method. What I believe people need to remember is that the horrific school shootings we are seeing are statistically only a small percentage of gun-related deaths. By far, the biggest category is suicide at 62 percent. In terms of violent crime, gun violence -- whether accident, suicide or aggression -- is strongly correlated to age. Starting at 14 or so, the younger you are, the more likely you are to have a bad incident with a gun if there is one available to you. Handguns, not rifles or semi-automatic weapons, are overwhelmingly the weapon of choice. In my view, this suggests that interventions such as the extreme risk prevention order or the one to protect partners of domestic abusers are probably a better mechanism for addressing gun-related crime than broad prohibitions because they narrowly target people who are at heightened risk of abusing their weapon. Perhaps additional money on education for young people and possibly a prohibition on sales to people under 21 should also be considered. The challenge is that groups like the NRA, which is the industry association for weapons manufacturers, like all manufacturing associations, wield way too much influence over legislative policy. When they oppose and dismiss legislation to allow for temporary confiscation of weapons from people adjudicated by multiple courts to be a danger to themselves and others as "gun grabbing", they make it clear that there is little room for common ground.

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